1028 Seasonal Mixed Layer Heat Budget in the Southeast Tropical Atlantic

Wednesday, 25 January 2017
4E (Washington State Convention Center )
Hillary A. Scannell, University of Washington/NOAA/PMEL, Seattle, WA; and M. J. McPhaden

We analyze a mixed layer heat budget at 6ºS, 8ºE from a moored buoy of the Prediction and Research Moored Array in the Atlantic (PIRATA) to better understand the causes of seasonal mixed layer temperature variability in the southeast tropical Atlantic. This region is of interest because it is susceptible to warm biases in coupled global climate models and has historically been poorly sampled. Previous work suggests that thermodynamic changes in both latent heat loss and absorbed solar radiation dominate mixed layer properties away from the equator in the tropical Atlantic, while advection and entrainment are more important near the equator. Changes in mixed layer salinity can also influence temperature through the formation of barrier layers and density gradients. Freshwater flux from the Congo River, migration of the Intertropical Convergence Zone and advection of water masses are considered important contributors to mixed layer salinity variability in our study region. We analyze ocean temperature, salinity and meteorological data beginning in 2013 using mooring, Argo, and satellite platforms to study how seasonal temperature variability in the mixed layer is influenced by air-sea interactions and ocean dynamics.
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